Could use some hotel/travel help

Smylers Smylers at
Thu Sep 26 11:55:37 BST 2013

Alan Mosca writes:

> I've got one word for you : Priceline.

OK, I've never used Priceline before so just had a look to see what they
can find for our London trip.

> You can easily get sub 100$ per night and have a 4*, depending on
> period.

The dates were fixed for us (we're attending a wedding).

I dispute “easily”. By default it searches all of London, which is
surely useless for everybody. It doesn't allow narrowing down by
postcode or Tube station. Admittedly it does offer to search by
proximity to golf courses, but regrettably directions for venues tend
not to mention those in the way they do postcodes and stations.

So I'm left reading through a long list of ‘other landmarks’ to work out
which one is likely to be nearest to where we want to stay, then going
through the resulting hotels list, adjusting the distances given to
allow for the delta between the location we actually want to search near
and the one it let us search near.

At which point it turns out that some of the purported hotels in the
list are actually hostels or apartments.

So far as I can tell we can get actual, non-scummy, hotels for $182 or
$239. Which admittedly is less than £189, but still way over the $100
you mentioned.

Oh, except that there's an extra mysterious[*] ‘taxes and fees’ added at
checkout, which I'm guessing is VAT, making the $182 actually $218 per
night (which, when translated to sterling, is exactly the same price
that quote for that room on those dates).

[*] Mysterious in the sense that they don't even try to justify how they
calculated that particular charge for this booking, just waffling on
about the kinds of things they cover.


Apparently it did.

Having already checked, Priceline didn't find anything
additional or provide better rates. And nor was it's interface so slick
or process so helpful that I'm wishing I'd used it instead of

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